6 Ways to Recycle Shredded Paper

Even though email IDs have almost eliminated the need to use papers, you might still receive important documentation bearing your name and address.

As a result, one of the best identity theft security recommendations is shredding, which ensures that no one gets their hands on your personal information.

But with so much shredded paper around, one might wonder about how to recycle shredded paper.

How is Shredded Paper Recycled?

Because it is still paper, it can be recycled, but there are a few restrictions.

First and foremost, the method of shredding paper weakens the natural fibers of the paper, lowering its value and reducing its capacity to be recycled.

In addition, once paper items have been shredded, they cannot be sorted in the same way that intact components such as magazines and storage boxes may be.

In order to be recycled, the paper must first be sorted, then packaged, then stacked.

It is then chemically processed and eventually divided into smaller bits until it is reduced to a thick, gooey pulp. It is then recycled.

In preparation for these stages, regular paper is relatively simple to organize, but small, tiny fragments of paper can ball up and cause havoc on equipment and filtering systems.

The recycling centers that do accept shredded paper must normally transport it to specialized facilities, which adds to the time and cost of the recycling process.

Despite the fact that paper is among the most widely used and easily recycled items, recycling shredded paper provides a unique set of obstacles.

If your paper is not disposed of properly, it may wind up in a landfill without being recycled.

Also read: Are Paper Plates Bad for the Environment?

6 Ways to Recycle Shredded Paper

We understand that most individuals throw their shredded paper in the garbage without thinking.

It’s something that both businesses and individuals undertake on a regular basis. But have you ever considered the environmental implications of such a simple act?

Consider the amount of paper we would throw away if we didn’t recycle.

Shredded paper is not accepted by many curbside recycling programs, especially those that use single-stream recycling.

Separation equipment could become clogged with shreds. If you can’t compost your shredded paper, what other option do you have than throwing it away?

Paper is still paper, even if it has been shredded. It can be recovered and recycled for a variety of activities, such as arts and crafts or gardening, much like conventional paper.

You still don’t believe us? Keep reading for more inspiration!


Are you looking forward to sitting by the fire in your backyard this summer?

Unless you already have the comfort of a gas-fueled campfire, it can be difficult to get a fire going in a natural environment.

To get the ball rolling, use shredded paper to serve as kindling.

Warning: Before lighting an open flame in your yard, be sure you are in compliance with local fire restrictions.

If it is permitted, make sure to keep an eye out for fire hazard signals. When the weather is dry and hot, the threat of forest fire increases tremendously.

Litter Box

It can also be used as the foundation for a cat’s litterbox. The litter will cluster if you use shredded paper, which will make cleaning the box easier.

It will also be easier to deodorize because the shredded paper absorbs nearly all of the moisture.

You don’t have a pet that requires soft bedding? You can also donate it to animal shelters or veterinary clinics that accept donations.

Shredded paper is practically the ideal material for soft bedding in almost every animal cage.

Please be in mind that certain paper and ink chemicals are hazardous to animals. Before utilizing the items, make sure your pet or other species are comfortable with them.

Also, be certain that those creatures do not enjoy eating paper.


Do you know that animal poop is good for your plants?

When your pet has fully used the shredded paper to finish its business, you can add that paper to your gardening technique.


You’ve probably kicked yourself a few times in the past for putting away fragile glass decorations without first covering them in some form of protective covering.

Having packaging materials on hand isn’t always a given, and by the time the parties are over, the last thing you would want to do is go out and buy packing materials.

As an alternative to searching through the house for extra packaging, use the shredded paper from your office shredder to keep your ornaments and decorations from being broken.

Do that and you won’t have to unpack those storage boxes with a sigh of disappointment.

Also read: Is Burning Paper Bad for the Environment?


Shredded paper can go in the green bin or the blue bin.

Shredded papers in the blue box must be sealed in a local supermarket plastic bag and deposited in the blue box labeled “Paper and Plastic Bag.”

The recycling container will not accept unorganized shredded paper.

In the green bin, place little amounts of shredded paper. Fill a garbage bag or a certified biodegradable bag halfway with shredded paper.

Loose shredded paper clumps to the edges and bottom of the bin, making collection impossible.


People don’t generally think of shredded paper as a mulching alternative, but it is in fact a choice.

It is okay to keep your shredded paper instead of buying mulch if you do not have any on hand or do not want to invest the money to purchase some on hand.

Then you may use it to cover more ground around flowers, bushes, fruit trees, and other plants, as well as wherever else you might require it.

As soon as you get the ground completely coated, you’ll want to damp it down to hold it in place.

After that, you may top it with sawdust or pine nuts to help hold it in place and improve the appearance of the ground.

Arts and Craft

Perhaps you wish to use it in the manufacture of your own paper? The process of turning scrap paper into pulp, which may be used to make brand new paper, is well-known.

Make your own diary or journal, even if it requires additional instruments. Isn’t it worth the effort?

If you’re an artist, you may also build your homemade paper clay and use it to create sculptures that are as detailed as your artistic vision allows.

When it comes to art projects for school, it’s a terrific option for students of all ages.

What to do With Shredded Paper?

If you thought that you could throw the shredded paper in the trash bin and be done with it, you are wrong.

For one thing, the tiny shredded paper does not adhere to the surface. When a blast of wind hits it, it lands in places it shouldn’t.

Secondly, shredded paper is nearly impossible to sort. It gets past the machines at your recycling center and ends up somewhere it shouldn’t.

It is landfilled rather than being converted into large, gorgeous bunches of paper that would ordinarily be pulped and turned into new paper products.

Here are a few ways to properly dispose of shredded paper:

Curbside Program

Shredded paper is among the most changeable materials in municipal recycling, so verify with your municipal curbside program before putting it in the recycle container.

Nearly every single city that collects shredded paper will need you to bag the paper before delivering it.

Pick and Drop Services

While there will be a little price associated with it, using a pick-up or drop-off service to get rid of shredded paper is among the most secure methods available.

In most cases, shredding services will handle the job for you, and as you might assume, they will employ shredders that offer a significantly higher level of protection than a conventional home shredder.


Composting shredded paper is an environmentally friendly method of disposing of waste.

In order to maintain a healthy carbon-to-nitrogen ratio in your compost pile, the paper should be used as a carbon-rich material.

Note: While most paper is suitable for composting, you should avoid adding shredded paper that is shiny or heavily inked to your compost pile.

Recycling Tips for Shredded Paper

  • Bags of shredded paper should be kept unopened.
  • If possible, use transparent recycling bags and identify them with the words “shredded paper.”
  • Placing it near the outside blue recycling trash bin or the yellow recycle cart will ensure that it is picked up.
  • Consider your options before you shred! Only shred documents that contain social security numbers or credit card information.

Final Thoughts

Make an effort to only discard what is absolutely essential in order to be environmentally friendly.

In the event that you shred paper, make sure to dispose of it properly, recycle it in large quantities through a collection program, or reuse it!

These are all tiny steps that we can take to make the world a better place for future generations.

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